Monday, April 7, 2008

Unconventional wine expert says the number of taste buds determines your wine preferences

Tim Hanni, the wine expert, makes a whole lot of sense when he postulates that taste in wine is largely determined by the number of taste nerves in the tongue. If you have a lot of nerves, you will tend to like sweeter wines like Sauternes and Boone's Farm. If you are a big fan of Mad Dog 20/20 or flinty dry champagne your tongue is likely to contain far fewer nerves than your apple wine swilling homeboy.
The same logic is surely applicable to taste in food.

I'm a "tolerant taster," my son is a "supertaster." When I was his age there was no vegetable I would not eat. I loved chicory and other bitter greens (still do). Why, I even used to hose down those parsley garnishes that diners and restaurants used to put on everything , whereas my boy complains that ketchup is bitter.

It's too bad that heightened sensitivity to taste due to a superabundance of fungiform papillae has come to be called "supertasting" because from where I sit, the only thing super about it, is that people who have lots of papillae might be better qualified to check the food of potentates for poison.

I suppose if my son decides to become a chef he's better off as a supertaster than its extreme opposite, a non-taster. Someone who finds it difficult to taste the basic tastes might be inclined to over-season and so he might grow up to be a Cajun chef or, heaven help me, one of those southwestern cooks who wear a holster with hot sauce in it.

Unconventional wine expert says the number of taste buds determines your wine preferences


Tags said...

In related news, scientists find that the number of brain cells being used corresponds to how good people think processed and fast food tastes.

More brain cells used, more lousy.

junglegirl said...

Hello, delurking to say that your son may be like me: I can't eat commercial jelly because it's too bitter. I, like your son may be, am actually tasting the aluminum from the commercial pans it's cooked in. Ketchup is acidic and so are berries. His taste buds are protecting his body from aluminum that he doesn't need, (do any of us?), in his body.

Cool, huh? : )

So, yeah, he is checking the food of a potentate - his dad - for poison. Now it's up to you to honor that. And will you? Snerk at health nuts at your own risk! Or, those of us with ears to hear...